My other was to take a few hours to have a drink with three members of the Sofia legal community who were particularly welcoming and helpful – Judge Dechev, Judge Georgiev, and Prof. Marinova. We had a lovely chat and I look forward to keeping in touch with each of them. I am already trying to think of ways to arrange a visit to Iowa for them.
On Thursday afternoon, things changed abruptly. I reached a significant goal I’d set for my writing, and about two hours later my new flatmate Grace arrived in Sofia. I went from the fairly predictable routine I’d maintained for the better part of three weeks to the realization that I would be leaving within days. I was able to do a bit of cleaning and organizing in the short time before welcoming Grace, a Fulbright scholar from Arizona is teaching at Sofia University this spring and will take my apartment. That evening Grace and I went for a walk around the neighborhood and had a nice dinner at 33 Stola, the Italian restaurant near the apartment.
Friday morning we had a meeting to get the lease transfer sorted, and then paid a visit (my last) to our favorite café. In the evening we hosted our neighbors and a few of my friends for a farewell/welcome gathering. A very good time was had by all, and it was nice to share a last bit of time with some of the people who have made Sofia such a memorable place.
Saturday was spent packing, interspersed with a trip to the university, brief visits with some neighbors, and dinner at Troika. Things were fairly well organized, and I found myself strangely organized on Sunday morning for my departure. Just before noon I took a taxi to Sofia Airport to begin the journey home.